London (change)
12 messages
28/05/2013 at 21:05

My meadow is being overcome by cow parsley and hog weed. My fault for letting them seed in the past, I know better now. If I attack them with the corner of a shovel and get the growing points out do you think that will do for them or will those long roots create more shoots. OH used this method on giant hogweed and it seems to have got rid of them but they weren't as established. He made a special tool like an inverted V with sharp edge and a long handle. He shoved it into the root and took the top off. I don't have that strength in my arms so it will be foot on shovel. But will it work?

28/05/2013 at 21:18

On Cow parsely which is biennial, probably. The Hog weed is likely to act like a dandelion and regenerate from any bit of root left in the ground. I paint the leaves of it with weed killer.

28/05/2013 at 21:23

Thanks Berghill. Hogweed is the greater problem as the leaves are so big and cover up more desirable meadow flowers. Perhaps I'll try an area with painted weed killer and one with cutting the top. They both retreat in parts that are mowed for a season or two but the howeed is still there, awaiting its chance.

28/05/2013 at 22:38

Please be very careful handling Giant Hogweed. The sap does something to the skin that allows the rays of the sun to cause serious burns and there have been cases where people have been badly scarred. The same goes for Rue. A very good friend of mine (now 91) is an MA and has lectured around the world in horticulture for many years: even she made the mistake of ripping out some rue in her garden on a sunny day without wearing gloves and next day her hands looked as though she had puit them in a fire! She knew instantly what she had done and acknowledged that even very knowledgable people can slip up at times.

28/05/2013 at 22:50

It's not giant hogweed John, just the native one. But thank you. 

28/05/2013 at 23:08

If you can spray or paint just the foliage of the plants you want to eradicate with Roundup this weedkiller is very affective on most broadleaved plants. Problem is it will also take out any other plant that it touches. Roundup takes a couple of weeks to work. It is taken down into the roots which them kills the plant. It is easy to get despondant having treated with Roundup to think nothing is happening after a week but give it time, I've found it very effective. Don't though use a sprayer that you will subsequently use for pesticides (for blackfly,greenfly etc). I made that mistake once, washing the spayer out very thoroughly and pumping plenty of clean water through the sprayer too before spraying for cabbage caterpillars. A week or so later my cabbages all keeled over & I lost them! I keep one sprayer now exclusively for weedkillers & where I can have resorted to hand-picking caterpillars.

28/05/2013 at 23:14

It will be down to painting the leaves individually and I'll just tackle a small area to start with. Probably take the rest of my life to do the lot  

I don't spray anything else, OH has occasionally used the sprayer for some workshop or DIY purposes but I only use it for glyphosate.

29/05/2013 at 08:52

It is called Hogweed by the way as the young stems were picked to feed to pigs. We have the red stemmed form as well as the green one. As you say, it is a flipping nuisance to get rid of and it grows so big and fast too.

29/05/2013 at 08:55

Didn't know about the pigs Berghill, should have worked it out though.


07/06/2013 at 12:39

the comment about the blisters applies to all umbellifers; including parsnips


be careful

07/06/2013 at 13:51

The world if full of dangers. It's a wonder any of us have survived as long as we have.

07/06/2013 at 17:52

Anything that keeps the vegetation down reduces the big umbellifers and if I mowed the entire meadow like a lawn for a few years they'd probably be gone but I like my long grasses and some of the more desirable meadow plants would succumb as well

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